Tuesday, May 28, 2019

One Day

I was listening to the radio during a very short drive yesterday, and heard a snippet of a story about serious problems that some military families were having with their housing. It was a fairly bog-standard "government-corporate complex" piece, with accusations of corporate negligence and government opacity in the face of "shameful" treatment of the families of active-duty military. On the one hand, it was unsurprising that the story ran on Memorial Day. But the story felt serious enough that it could have run at any time, and so it did seem sort of surprising that it ran that particular day; it didn't seem like something that one would hold on to.

There are a few holidays during the year that are military themed, and many news outlets tend to devote a greater percentage of their airtime to stories about the military during those times. Which lends them an air of being the appointed time to think about the military. Just as there's a day to think about one's mother, a day to remember the founding ideals of the nation et cetera. And these then seem to become topics that the public doesn't put much thought into for the remainder of the year. And in this way, holidays become a sort of scaffolding that the populace as a whole can use to organize thoughts and remembrances.

It's understandable that people might need that. The modern world is full of things that demand attention; I wonder if people would have the bandwidth to place these things top-of-mind if these various holidays didn't come along to remind them.

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